TN govt to invoke POCSO Act for sexual misconduct during online classes

Chief Minister MK Stalin says government will soon issue guidelines for conduct of online classes

Stalin, The Federal, English news website
Stalin also instructed schools to record online classes, which in turn will be reviewed by a committee of parent-teacher associations to avert further recurrence of such incidents in future.

Taking serious note of allegations of sexual misconduct during online classes against a faculty member of Padma Seshadra Bala Bhavan (PSBB) school in Chennai, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin has said that the state government will frame guidelines for online classes and ensure that offenders are booked under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.

Stalin who held a review meeting with officials on the matter on Wednesday, said the government will soon issue a set of guidelines to be followed during online classes, according to a press note issued after the meeting.

The chief minister also instructed schools to record online classes, which in turn will be reviewed by a committee of parent-teacher associations to avert further recurrence of such incidents in future.

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A committee constituting the commissioner of school education department, officers of cyber crime wing and crime against children, academics and IT experts has been formed to roll out the guidelines within the next seven days,

School Education Minister Anbil Mahesh Poyyamozhi also said that a helpline will be set up to receive complaints from students. Stalin told officials that these complains must be discreetly probed by the cyber crime department without causing any harm to the child (complainant).

The state government’s decision comes following allegations of sexual misconduct against a teacher of PSBB, a reputed Chennai school by students, during online classes. Students had alleged that while the teacher asked uncomfortable questions to girls and questioned their attires, he came to the online class wearing a bath towel. The teacher has been arrested and remanded to judicial custody.

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